John Thorsnes

PGA Member

John Thorsnes

A PGA Member since 1990, John has spent the majority of his career in the great Northwest before dividing his time for Bird Golf in Oregon and winters in Arizona. John has been the recipient of several awards in his career having been three times the Teacher of the Year in PGA Chapter, a three-time Golf Professional of the Year, and a five-time Bill Strausbaugh Award recipient. John was the Head Professional at prestigious Clubs: Pumpkin Ridge, Tom O’Shanter and Walla Country Club before developing and owning the highly acclaimed Wine Valley Golf Club in Washington. An accomplished player having won a host of PGA Section events, John has always maintained a focus on teaching, which he now dedicates himself to completely. John has studied and learned with legendary teachers like Jim Flick, Butch Harmon, and Hank Haney who have all influenced his philosophy and style. John believes that simplicity is the most effective way to teach his students and his passion for helping each student is immediately evident with everyone he works with.

Teaching Philosophy

My teaching philosophy is attempt to make an extremely complicated game as simple and fun as possible for all my students. Every student is different in ability level, how they learn, physical make up and what their goals are. The magic of a good lesson is to put the student at ease as soon as possible, understand what they are looking for and finding the best path to accomplish that. A great basic set up is crucial to any good golf swing and can be somewhat universal. Good grip, stance, ball position and alignment or otherwise known as a pre-shot routine is the foundation for setting up a good swing. The swing itself is uniquely different depending on the student and there is no one size fits all method. My goal is to have my students relax and swing athletically to a balanced finish. Most students focus far too much on the ball and hitting at or to the ball rather than focusing on their swing and staying relaxed and balanced. Furthermore, not only do I want the student to be able to perform the changes we are making in their swing I also want them to understand why we are making the change. When they understand it they are more willing to commit to the change and also hopefully be able to self-diagnose. I want my student to leave the lesson enthused about their game and encouraged that they are on a path to improvement and enjoying the game even more.
42 years

Teaching Experience


3-Time Washington PGA Chapter Teacher of the Year:2006, 2007, 2010

3-Time Washington PGA Chapter PGA Professional of the Year: 2011, 2021, 201


What a special 3 days it was for sure! Ken and I spoke several times each day and much more on the flights home. We could not have imagined a more personable, professional and qualified golf instructor who has now had a profound impact on both of our games. A swing system that will stay for life. Determining our preferred learning methods and then adapting your lessons to our learning styles, skill levels and of course the will to improve as driven by our love for the game was the most effective game improvement either of has experienced, ever.

- Chris -

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